Chemistry is a difficult subject to master, much less the IB Chemistry curriculum. However, IB Chemistry can be a manageable and enjoyable subject once you know the right techniques for it. Since you are here, you are likely to be interested in enrolling in this subject or are already currently enrolled in it. Hence, this article will discuss the overall assessment, content coverage, some common challenges faced, and how you can overcome them to ace your IB chemistry. This article will also shine a light on how having IB Chemistry tuition can help you to attain your IB Chemistry goals.
Read also: Expert Guide to IB Tuition in Singapore
IB Chemistry Curriculum in Singapore
Overview of IB Chemistry in Singapore
IB Chemistry belongs to Group 4 of the IB DP curriculum, also known as Experimental Science. The course is meant to help IB DP students think critically about the world around them. IB Chemistry is a subject that combines academic study, practical experience, and investigation skills. It helps students to develop a broader and wider range of practical skills as well as increase their use of mathematics.
The IB diploma offers subjects in two different levels, Standard Level and Higher Level. Students are also allowed to choose to take the IB Chemistry at either level. The different levels differ in scope and content coverage, here is a breakdown of the two levels of IB Chemistry.
|Topic||No. of Hours (Standard Level)||No. of Hours (Higher Level)|
|Chemical Bonding and Structure||13.5||13.5|
|Acids and Bases||6.5||6.5|
|Measurement and Data Processing||10||10|
Additional Higher Level Topics
There are additional higher level topics of total 60 hours for Higher Level students and they are as follows:
|Topic||No. of Hours (Higher Level Only)|
|The Periodic Table||4|
|Chemical Bonding and Structure||7|
|Acids and Bases||10|
|Measurement and Analysis||2|
IB Chemistry Assessment and Exam Format
There are two main components for the IB Chemistry SL and HL. Here are the two components.
Internal Assessment – 20%
There is a single individual investigation assessment where students are exposed to hands-on practical experience. Students will use databases, modeling, simulations, and or hybrid to carry out this assessment. The overall assessment will take approximately 10 hours and a write-up of 6 to 12 pages is needed. Students will be assessed on these five components: Personal Engagement, Exploration, Analysis, Evaluation, and Communication.
External Assessment – 80%
This assessment comprises three written components, Paper 1 (Multiple Choice Questions), Paper 2 (Short Answer and Extended Response Questions), and Paper 3 (Data-Based/ Experimental Work Questions, Short Answer and Extended Response Questions on one of the four options).
Here is a further breakdown of the external assessment for Standard Level and Higher Level.
|Paper||Standard Level||Higher Level|
|1||45mins||30 marks, 20%||1 h||40 marks, 20%|
|2||1h 15 mins||50 marks, 40%||2h 15mins||95 marks, 36%|
|3||1h||35 marks, 20%||1h 15mins||45 marks, 24%|
Common challenges faced by IB Chemistry students in Singapore
1 – Difficulty in transitioning to the IB syllabus
Moving to a new curriculum is not an easy task. Many students who transition from a different curriculum to the IB curriculum struggle to keep up with the differences and changes. This can hinder students’ learning pace and progress.
To tackle and overcome this challenge, it is recommended that students have a bridging course from their previous curriculum to IB. Bridging courses are available for students who are looking to transition to other curricula and they specifically tackle the areas that will bring obstacles to students the most. Tutopiya is an online tuition platform that offers bridging mathematics and science courses to help students transition smoothly to the IB curriculum You can reach out to our experts today to arrange for a free trial session with our experienced IB tutors!
2 – Lack of integration between chapters and no solid foundation prior
Chemistry is a subject that does not necessarily require prior knowledge of the chapters before. Some chapters are independent by themselves. Moreover, chemistry is a subject that is abstract and fairly difficult to understand with just paper and pen. It is difficult to picture and understand since chemistry is mostly dealing with things that are naked to the eye.
For chapters that rely on previously learned knowledge, students may find it difficult to dive deeper due to the lack of a strong foundation. More often than not, students move on to the next chapter without having a sufficient understanding of the prior chapter. This can snowball into a series of questions, doubts, and uncertainties for the subject.
To overcome these challenges, students are encouraged to have a solid foundation in basic chemistry. IB chemistry builds on previously learned knowledge and requires students to already possess a certain level of understanding of chemistry. Much less taking the Higher level, where students learn even more in-depth. Tutopiya also specializes in IB Chemistry Tuition where we have a pool of experienced IB Chemistry tutors who can deliver quality online tuition to students all over the world. We also focus on building strong foundations in subjects for future academic success.
3 – Lack of quality resources for IB chemistry students
There are so many resources available online, but not all resources are useful and relevant to the IB chemistry syllabus. The lack of quality resources for IB Chemistry can hinder students’ learning progress as doing as much additional practice for IB Chemistry is the only way to better understand the concepts. The nature of Chemistry is abstract as most of the things we study in chemistry are naked to the eye, hence the only way to strengthen your knowledge is by doing additional practice. However, there are only so many past year papers students can do, there is simply nothing much to do except work on more questions.
Hence, Tutopiya has recently launched a resource bank to help our students learn better and more efficiently with quality resources. Quiztopiya is packed with over 30,000 questions for students to practice on. These questions have been specially curated and designed by a pool of experienced tutors who are experienced in the IB curriculum. In addition, these questions have step-by-step answers for students to refer to! Answers and working are surely the life savior for many students! Hence, the only way to overcome this challenge is to look for trusted platforms that put out useful resources for students to enhance their learning.
IB Chemistry Tuition: Benefits
1 – Build a strong foundation
Having IB Chemistry Tuition helps students build a strong foundation in their Chemistry. This is extremely important for students who are looking to pursue a course that relies on Chemistry knowledge in the university. IB Chemistry Tuition offers students the chance to strengthen their knowledge which can have positive ripple effects on their future academic success.
2 – Useful resources
Having IB Chemistry Tuition means that students are exposed to more useful learning materials that are relevant to the IB chemistry curriculum and syllabus. Tutors will use resources that are up to date and students can get additional practice to improve their IB chemistry.
3 – Get help easily
Of course, IB Chemistry tuition means you will have a trusted IB Chemistry tutor who can help you to clear your chemistry doubts and questions. Having your questions answered can allow you to move forward and build a strong foundation for the subject.